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Rick Ross assassination attempt might have links to Gangster Disciples
Jan-30-2013 407 0


There is no shortage of suspects in Monday's assassination attempt on well-known rap star Rick Ross. And they all lead back to Chicago.

Ross survived a shooting ambush in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, Monday morning.

The worst kept secret in the rap world has been a dispute between Ross and the Chicago-based Gangster Disciples. Ross was apparently targeted by gang leaders after he used some of their signs, symbols and logos without paying them the required fees.

Over the past few months, gang members have posted video death threats against the rapper on YouTube. Monday, a hit squad opened fire on Ross in South Florida.

There was a spray of gunfire just before daybreak on the silver Rolls Royce being driven by rapper Rick Ross, stage name for William L. Roberts.

"Nine or 10 shots, rapid fire," said a witness. "AK-47 or pretty large rifle, it was definitely a rifle."

Fort Lauderdale police tell the I-Team that they cannot confirm nor dismiss whether the allege threats to the rap star are legitimate but that detectives are examining the forensic evidence.

Despite all the bullets, rapper Ross, celebrating his 37th birthday Monday, was not hurt and neither was his girlfriend in the car, which crashed into an apartment.

Videos claiming to have been posted by Gangster Disciple members in cities across the U.S. all say that the rapper needs to pay the gang or he will be killed.

Authorities in South Florida say the motive for the attack is unclear.

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Denis Slattery Mar-28-2015 150 0
“Empire” star Taraji Henson apologized to Glendale cops after a video contradicting her claims that officers racially profiled her son during a traffic stop surfaced, according to reports.

The 44-year-old Emmy-nominated actress said the stop influenced her decision to send her college-bound son to Howard University in Washington, D.C., instead of USC.

But footage obtained by the Los Angeles Times cast doubts on Henson’s initial claim that police improperly targeted her son.

“I would like to publicly apologize to the officer and the Glendale Police Department,” she said in an Instagram message after the paper released the video. “A mother's job is not easy and neither is a police officer's. Sometimes as humans we overreact without gathering all the facts. As a mother in this case, I overreacted and for that I apologize. Thank you to that officer for being kind to my son.”

Henson’s 20-year-old son, Marcell Johnson, was pulled over by a Glendale police officer on Oct. 18 last year after failing to yield to a pedestrian.

When asked if he had anything illegal in his Honda Civic, Johnson admits to having marijuana and the prescription drug Ritalin in the car.

He then admits to smoking pot about two hours earlier and says that the Ritalin was given to him by a friend.

After consenting to a search and a sobriety test, the cops let him off with a citation and a warning.

“I am giving this to you too because you smoked weed about two hours ago … and a warning if you have Ritalin on you and you’re not supposed to, don’t do it,” the cops said. “That’s a big violation and I wouldn’t want to do that to you.”

Glendale Police Chief Robert Castro said the racial profile allegations resulted in threats against the department.

“The contact and actions with Marcell Johnson were legal, professional and empathetic,” he said.

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Doyle Murphy Mar-27-2015 190 0
Darius McCrary, whose Eddie Winslow was upstaged by lovable nerd Steve Urkel on the 1990s show, was busted Wednesday in Michigan for failing to pay child support, authorities told the Daily News.

An Oakland County judge ordered sheriff’s deputies to arrest the former child star during a court appearance on Wednesday, giving McCrary an ultimatum: Pay a $5,500 fine or sit in jail.

The 38-year-old actor was booked but quickly decided to pay up rather than sleep over, authorities said.

McCrary faced up to two weeks behind bars, according the TMZ.com, which first reported the arrest.

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INQUISTR Mar-22-2015 425 0
Malik Yoba was reportedly fired from Empire for drugs, with insiders saying his substance abuse was causing problems on the set and eventually prompted Fox execs to step in.

Yoba’s Empire character, Vernon Turner, was killed off in the show’s two-hour season finale. In an interview after the big finale, Yoba said he was surprised but not bitter about the decision to kill off his character.

Malik said he learned from series co-creator Lee Daniels that word came down from Fox that Vernon Turner would be killed off.

“Lee called me and told me,” Yoba told TMZ. “He said that, um, someone at Fox said that someone needed to die in the season finale. So, I was like ‘Word?’ ”

Malik was diplomatic about the decision, however, saying:

“To this day, I don’t know — in the infinite wisdom — who thought it was the best approach, but someone did. I never got a clear answer on it. But it wasn’t about the work or ethics or work ethics. It was the plot line.

Vernon’s gone, but Malik lives on. And — as I’ve told you, Chuck, in private — it’s a great opportunity to push forward the work that I’m doing in terms of building my own empire, if you will.”

But a source close to the show said that Malik Yoba was fired for drugs, with his substance abuse catching the attention of higher-ups at the network.

The insider stated,

“Malik Yoba is back on drugs and he was making everyone on the set uncomfortable. One star of the show even threatened to quit during the 10th episode, but then they upped their pay to convince them to stay. Fox caught wind of what was going on and gave Lee Daniels an ultimatum: ‘You tell Malik he’s fired or we will.’ Fox also threatened to shelve the show indefinitely if Daniels didn’t do as he was told. So he did, and the rest is history.”

Despite the now widespread rumor, there is no verification that Malik Yoba was fired for drugs. And the official word from Empire show-runners was that Vernon Turner was killed off as part of a planned shake-up at the end of the first season, with neither Yoba nor Lee Daniels speaking publicly about the rumor.

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nancy dillon Mar-20-2015 99 0
Rap mogul Suge Knight collapsed in a courtroom Friday shortly after a judge set his bail at $25 million in his pending murder case.

The co-founder of Death Row Records was walking back to the defense table after the judge initially left the bench so his lawyer could address a medical issue.

Knight hit the ground and appeared motionless when the judge cleared the courtroom.

Lawyer Matthew Fletcher came out about 10 minutes later and told Knight’s family that the burly inmate was still unconscious.

Knight’s mother started crying in the hallway, asking for more information.

“I’m very upset. I’m very upset,” Knight’s father told the Daily News. “We want him to be healthy. We just want to know he’s okay. We can deal with everything else. We just need him to be okay.”

Fletcher said Knight didn’t get a breakfast Friday morning and wasn’t receiving proper medication in custody. He said Knight has diabetes, glaucoma and a blood clot near his lung and was being kept in solitary confinement without hot water or a blanket.

Before he passed out, Knight was “sweating like a pig,” Fletcher said.

An ambulance took Knight to a hospital, and Fletcher said he was awaiting an update late Friday morning.

The medical emergency came after Fletcher called the prosecution’s request for $25 million bail both “absurd” and “ludicrous” in his argument for a “more reasonable” bail of $2 million.

Prosecutors, meanwhile, called Knight a “prolific and unrepentant” criminal with a long history of violent behavior who's been extorting money from up-and-coming rappers.

In court, Deputy District Attorney Cynthia Barnes argued for the $25 million bail saying Knight “escalated his behavior and committed murder” after he was released on bail last year in a pending felony robbery case.

“Twenty-five million may be financial incentive enough to stop this behavior,” she told Judge Ronald Coen.

Knight, dressed in an orange jail uniform and black slippers, twitched his left arm repeatedly during the hearing.

He’s accused of mowing down two men with his truck in a restaurant parking lot on Jan. 29, injuring former gang member Cle “Bone” Sloan and killing local businessman Terry Carter.

Carter’s daughter Crystal Carter sat through the hearing and scoffed at Knight’s collapse as she left.

“He’s an actor,” said. Another Carter relative called Knight "a murderer."

In her bail motion, Barnes said Knight has continued his "repugnant life of crime" in the last decade and pulled in millions from extortion along with his associates.

“Apparently, when a new artist or rapper comes to either Los Angeles or Las Vegas, he is required to pay a ‘tax’ to Defendant Knight,” the motion said.

Prosecutors said Knight is facing a life sentence if convicted and would be a flight risk if released.

Fletcher offered to have Knight outfitted with a monitoring ankle bracelet.

Prosecutors also claimed Knight made threats over the upcoming film "Straight Outta Compton," which chronicles the rise of iconic rap group N.W.A.

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After two weeks in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles, the "Blurred Lines" copyright infringement trial has finally come to an end. The eight member jury voted unanimously that Robin Thicke and song producer Pharrell Williams had infringed on the 1977 Marvin Gaye song "Got To Give It Up."

The jury found that Thicke and Williams had infringed on the tune, but not T.I. The eight jurors also determined that the infringement was not willful, but also not innocent.

The jury awarded the Gaye family $4 million in damages, with profits of more than $1,600,000 from William and more that $1,760 from Thicke.

Overall, the Gayes were awarded just shy of $7.4 million.

An audible gasp was heard in the courtroom as the verdict was read.

Thicke initially filed a preemptive lawsuit against relatives of Marvin Gaye in 2013, after the family claimed that "Blurred Lines" copied Gaye's song. Gaye's relatives subsequently filed a countersuit against singer Thicke, producer Williams and rapper T.I., claiming their chart-topping single ripped off Gaye's 1977 song.

During the trial, it was revealed that "Blurred Lines" sales exceeded $16 million with Thicke and Williams having made over $5 million each; T.I. earned more than $700,000.

Statutory damages of $9,375 were assessed.

The trial showed video of media interviews with Thicke and Williams saying they were inspired by Marvin Gaye and wanted to channel "Got To Give It Up" with "Blurred Lines."

On the stand, however, Thicke stated that he was high on vodka and Vicodin during all of those interviews.

Williams testified that he only realized he had channeled the older single after having released "Blurred Lines." He claimed any similarities were not pre-conceived.

Thicke also said on the stand that he has been referred to as "the white Marvin Gaye," and he embellished his interviews once people started telling him that "Blurred Lines" was similar to "Got To Give It Up."

None of the Gaye children took the stand. But Jan Gaye, Marvin's ex-wife, and mother of Nona and Frankie and stepmother to Marvin III, testified that when she first heard "Blurred Lines" she liked it and was thankful that it was breathing new life into "Got To Give It Up," to which she had contributed vocals and told the court was one of Marvin Gaye's personal favorites.

She had initially tweeted a thank you to Williams and Thicke. However she said, on the stand, that at that time, she assumed "Blurred Lines" had been properly licensed from "Got To Give It Up."

Gaye's three children, Nona, Frankie and Marvin III also claimed that Thicke and his former wife Paula Patton, with whom he co-wrote the 2011 single "Love After War," infringed upon Marvin Gaye's 1976 song "After the Dance."

The Gaye children own the copyright to the Marvin Gaye sheet music registered with the Copyright Office. The commercial sound recording of "Got To Give It Up" was determined by the judge to be inadmissible evidence and it was not played during the trial beyond modified versions which the judge allowed. "Blurred Lines," however, was played in court several times.

‘Blurred Lines’ Lawsuit Nearly Doubles Sales of Disputed Marvin Gaye Song ? © Provided by TheWrap ‘Blurred Lines’ Lawsuit Nearly Doubles Sales of Disputed Marvin Gaye Song
During one unusual and lively day at the trial, Thicke used a keyboard to play a medley of songs by U2, Alphaville and The Beatles to show that you can use similar chords to create many different songs.

In closing arguments, each side accused the other of using distractions and confusion to detract from the real issues in the case. While the Gayes' attorney said it was patently obvious to anyone who has heard "Blurred Lines" that it is a copy of "Got To Give It Up," lawyers for the Thick party said you can not copyright a groove or an era.

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The Bel-Air home Mariah Carey and Nick Cannon once shared recently sold for $9 million. But Cannon isn't happy with how the deal went down. According to TMZ, the "America's Got Talent" host has filed a lawsuit claiming he wasn't adequately informed about the sale's proceedings by the ex-couple's business manager Michael Kane, whom he reportedly believes gave more information to Carey along the way. Cannon wants the profit from the sale frozen until he's confident it will be divided fairly. Kane, meanwhile, is quoted by TMZ as calling the suit "a desperate act from a sadly desperate man." Cannon and Carey confirmed their separation in August of last year.

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AP Mar-03-2015 227 0
Oprah Winfrey will close Harpo Studios in Chicago, where she filmed "The Oprah Winfrey Show" for more than 20 years, this December, and will transition production for her cable network to a studio in California.

Harpo Studios and the Oprah Winfrey Network made the announcement Tuesday. OWN recently moved into a new studio in West Hollywood, California, and work currently done at Harpo Studios in Chicago will now be done there.

Winfrey sold the Harpo Studios property in Chicago's West Loop neighborhood to a developer last year for about $32 million. She said in a statement Tuesday that Harpo Studios has been a "blessing" in her life and she's now "looking ahead" to inhabiting her California studio.

The city named the street outside Harpo Studios "Oprah Winfrey Way" in 2011.

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tmz Mar-01-2015 279 0
Charmayne Maxwell -- part of the 90s R&B group Brownstone -- died after a mysterious fall ... according to reports.

Charmayne was attending a soccer game in Denmark on Saturday when she fell ... according to a Danish media outlet ... which described her death as an "accident." She was married to Danish music producer Carsten Soulshock.

No further details at this point about the fall and exactly how she died -- but Charmayne's friends have been reacting on social media. Fellow Brownstone member Teisha Brown said, "I just need to be by you 1 more time on stage MAX!"

The group -- which was on Michael Jackson's MJJ Music label -- had its biggest hit with 1995's "If You Love Me." They earned a Billboard Music Award and a Grammy nomination for the song.


Read more: http://www.tmz.com/2015/03/01/brownstone-charmayne-maxwell-dead-dies-fall-denmark/#ixzz3TAHhthJ8

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Feb-27-2015 169 0
Rapper Lil Wayne has filed a lawsuit against his record label Cash Money, alleging that he is owed $51 million.

According to the suit, Lil Wayne, 32, says Cash Money and its CEO Bryan “Birdman” Williams has withheld millions of dollars for his upcoming unreleased album The Carter V, TMZ reports.

Lil Wayne says the label was supposed to pay him an $8 million advance on his album, plus $2 million once it was delivered. The album was completed in December but Lil Wayne says he has not seen any of the money.

The New Orleans native claims he should be allowed to end his contract with the label and receive payment of $51 million instead.

In addition to his artistic freedom, the Lollipop rapper has asked a judge to declare him joint copyright holder of all Young Money recordings, currently an imprint of Cash Money, including collaborations with Drake and Niki Minaj.

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